I went up to CCNWR today.  Thery are trying to keep some areas wet, but the effects of the drought are obvious.  There was still one Upland Sandpiper out in the big field, but I could not find any Buff-breasted Sandpipers although the habitat looked reasonable and there were hordes of Killdeer.  Other shorebirds included both Yellowlegs, Solitary, Spotted, Pectoral, and Least Sandpiper and Wilson's Snipe (which seems very early and was first reported last week).  The best bird was a Swallow-tailed Kite.  Joe Eades spotted it in a distant flock of Missisisippi Kites.  It was distant, but it was clearly larger, paler, and when it turned the distinctive forked tailed was visible.  Sedge Wrens were singing everywhere.  There were Great-blue and Green Herons, Great Egrets, and an immature Black-crowned Night Heron.  The slough at Windfield dam is slowly drying, but it is still good habitat.  I added Stilt and Semipalmated Sandpipers there.  I could not refind the two Wilson's Phalaropes that were there Thursday.  There did not seem to be anything at the sod farms, but there were irrigating the fields at Ketteman Road so there might be hope there.
 
David Becher
Saint Louis 


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